Donīt call me a real gone kid anymore
Evening Times 18th April 2001

Lorraine McIntosh is back on tour with Deacon Blue seven years after they split up but, as she tells SHEILA HAMILTON, thereīs more to life than music

THE WAITRESS hovered anxiously. "Any chance of tickets to King Tutīs tonight?"

"I had to ask," she said apologetically when Lorraine McIntosh shook her head ruefully.

The overwhelming reaction to Deacon Blueīs private King Tutīs gig and their sell-out tour are encouraging signs that their fans have just been lying low and waiting for their come-back after seven years.

"Youīre always relieved because you think no oneīs going to come," Lorraine admitted. "You canīt help but have those neurotic fears."

Everyone was up for it, she says, when the offer came to reform the band.

"Ricky and I had always wanted to sing again together because we love it and we wanted to work with the other guys again."

But it wasnīt easy to pull everything together because everyone else had made their own lives and recording had to be fitted in when they had time off work.


They would all be there - Lorraine, Ricky, Dougie Vipond, James Prime, Ewan Vernal and of course, Graeme Kelling, who is making a remarkable recovery from cancer of the pancreas.

"Last year at this time, we didnīt know if Graeme was going to live," Lorraine revealed. "Itīs taken a lot out of him but here he is about to go on tour, which must give hope to a lot of people who are going through the same thing.

Even though she had been up all night with five-month-old baby Seamus after an exhausting day in London the day before, Lorraine herself, a dark Irish beauty, looked glowing and eager for their first gig.

She is 36 now and Ricky is seven years older, but the enthusiasm is undimmed.

The night before she had told herself when she was tired and the plane was late, īno, you couldnīt have it all, marriage, three children, a career as a rock singerī.

But morning had put a different complexion on things. "Itīs very hard, but Iīm doing it because I love it. Itīs what I do, what I love to do.

"What I like about these things is they come in small bursts because I do love being with my kids and they need me at home."

The children are eight-year-old Emer, six-year-old Georgia and five-month-old Seamus.

THIS time, the touring wonīt be so intensive. "It went on for years our touring and we went to nice places, but you got very tired of it."

In fact, Lorraine actually found it hard when the band stopped, despite going to the States for a while with Ricky, who was making his own album.

"I missed the life, missed the people, missed the excitement of being part of this big gang. I went from having these work colleagues to having none."

There was a time when she and Ricky couldnīt walk down the street together without being stopped.

But all that has changed. "Fame is a very transient thing and it did mean that I was able to do all the normal things that I used to worry I might not be able to do with the take them to school or to the supermarket. Nobody bats an eyelid these days."

While Ricky has continued with his solo career - apart from a Deacon Blue reunion in 1999 - she has started her own little band, Cub, with Brian Docherty.

"Weīve only played two tiny gigs, but itīs musically very different and very much the kind of music I wanted to make."

Lorraine is quite clearly a happy person, happy in her marriage, happy in her children and happy in her home - a large, detached house in Newlands.

"I have lived a blessed life, I know it, but I donīt take it for granted. I am aware that life is not that easy for everyone."

Lorraine worked in Glasgow at all sorts of jobs before doing one year at teacher training college before joining Deacon Blue.

When she branched out into acting, taking a major role in the Ken Loach film, My Name is Joe, followed by other parts including a role in Taggart, people would ask how Ricky liked her being in the limelight.

"Iīd say to them, īHow insecure do you imagine people are?ī If itīs the person you love, you want them to do well and go for what they want to be.

"Weīve always been very confident in each other, always encouraged each other to go off and do things."

"It was just a very proud moment for him when we sat there at the premiere and my name came up on screen."

HER big screen debut came about through her friend, writer Paul Laverty.

"We used to sing and carry on and he said one night he thought Iīd be a good actor and I met Ken Loach for a meal. I was a big fan and I was a bit in awe, but I just kept thinking īthatīs been brilliant - Iīll never see him again.

"But I had to do this improvisation and part of me was terrified and part of me was just revelling in it."

She had always been a bit of a performer, singing harmonies with her dad at home.

But much as she loves acting, singing is her first love. The bandīs new album, Homesick, is out next week and already, thereīs been good reaction to the title song on the internet.

The title came from a musician/songwriter friend called Davie Scott, who had told friends from London he was working with Ricky.

They couldnīt listen to Deacon Blue, they told him, because the music made them homesick for Glasgow.

"When Ricky played me the song, I was very moved by it. Itīs a very poignant word. Itīs not necessarily about being homesick for a place, because I have my home, but you can be homesick for a memory, for a past, for people, for a time in your life...and listening to it made me homesick for I donīt know what..."

So are Deacon Blue back for good? The omens are good. "We donīt have a game plan, never had one...but youīre always ambitious, you want to do well."

Could she ever have imagined the success she has enjoyed?

"You know Iīve sometimes thought about that. I always enjoyed imagining and being in a world of my own and there was a part of me that always thought I would make it."